Cardboard Bear Desk Organizer

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The Cardboard Collective / Cardboard Bear Desk Organizer

I’ve been playing around with making templates and shapes from things you find in the kitchen, so here’s a funny little animal that was born out of that process, and was inspired by some similar wood and ceramic pieces I’ve seen on the internet as of late.

You’ll need a cardboard tube, corrugated cardboard, scissors, white glue, a drinking glass and a spoon.

Simple Steps:

THe Cardboard Collective Cardboard Bear Process 2

1. Flatten the toilet paper tube and cut along both creases to cut the tube in half.
2. Layer the two halves of the tube together to make the cradle for the organizer.

The Cardboard Collective

3. Use the mouth of the drinking glass as a form to trace the curves for the front and back  of the bear’s hips and shoulders. Cut.

4. Trim the tube to the desired length and assemble the organizer by gluing the tube to the hip and shoulder pieces. Secure with a rubber band while drying.

The Cardboard Collective Cardboard Bear Process
5. Use the base of the drinking glass as a form to trace the bear face, add ears, cut. Glue face to the front of the organizer.

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6. To make the nose, trace the curve of a teaspoon, cut in half and glue to the cardboard face.

Spoon, glass, plate, spatula…… hmmm. What else can we make?

 

Album Cover Pocket Folders

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Recycled Album Cover Pocket Folders by Amber/ The Cardboard Collective

During my New Year’s cleaning I unearthed a stack of album covers that I’ve used on many projects over the course of the last two years. As I contemplated finally recycling what was left, the photograph on the cover of this Linda Ronstadt album piqued my interest. I sat and stared at it.

I thought

…….prettiness, that’s what I’m seeking right here and now in the middle of winter, that feeling.

Recycled Cardboard Pocket Folder by Amber / The Cardboard Collective

So I brushed and cut my hair, pulled on my brightest striped sweater, and got busy making something pretty.

because of you Linda.

Recycled Album Cover Pocket Folders by Amber / The Cardboard Collective

Start with a double pocket style album cover. Cut the album cover to the dimensions of 19″ (48cm) x 12.5″ (32cm). The height of the pocket is 4.5″ (12 cm)

Recycled Album Cover Pocket Folders by Amber / The Cardboard CollectiveRecycled Album Cover Pocket Folders by Amber / The Cardboard CollectiveCardboard Pocket Folder by Amber / The Cardboard CollectiveRecycled Cardboard Pocket Folder by Amber / The Cardboard Collective

This is where you can add some pretty paper if the inside of your cover is aged.

Pocket Folder by Amber / The Cardboard CollectivePocket Folder by Amber / The Cardboard Collective

The last and most interesting part of this project is the trim. I used strips of interesting paper and gold cardboard folded over the edges (about 0.75″/2cm wide). You can glue the trim down, but I sewed it onto the folder using a standard needle and my sewing machine. I used the hand treadle to get started and then back-stitched at the beginning and end.

Cup of cocoa anyone?

Recycled (cardboard) Album Cover Pocket Folder by Amber / The Cardboard Collective

Return!

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The Cardboard Collective

After a wonderful holiday in Vietnam with my family and friends, we suffered a flu outbreak and a broken camera. Many regrets for my delayed absence! There are some new projects on the horizon, and I wanted to start by showing you a few treasures from our trip.

The wooden stamp above is from Hoi An. There are a few sellers in the old town set up street-side who have a turn-around of 1 day. I’m not sure how they are able to carve wood so quickly and with such precision, but the stamp takes me back to that beautiful city draped with silk lanterns and flowering vines, as well as memories of so many amazing meals!

The patterned paper which was being sold en mass at the market in Hue is used for making effigies that are burned for the New Year’s celebrations. They had a million different colors and patterns, but since I was traveling by bike that day I could only bring back what I was able to slog along on a full day of sightseeing.

I hope to be plastering many future projects happily……….. with double happiness paper.

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Cardboard Christmas Star

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Cardboard Christmas Star www.thecardboardcollective.com

This has been my first experience decorating a Christmas tree as an adult. After university, I always lived overseas and traveled on my holiday break. Once we moved to Japan and started our family, the girls were always so little and then there was the question of space, storage and living or artificial tree.

I ended up finding a little artificial tree at the recycling center and the girls have fallen in love with it. They made pomanders, threaded glass beads and popcorn, and covered it with the 100 tiny paper cranes that one of my husband’s students gave to him several years ago.

We were missing a star though, and although the one I made for the top is a little serious for our kid- decorated tree, I hope we will grow into it over time.

Cardboard Christmas Star Tree Topper - The Cardboard Collective

Simple Steps:

I used recycled gold cardboard that I’ve collected, but you can use thin cardboard and gold paint to get a similar effect.

  1. Cut out two cardboard circles, a little larger than a spool of thread, and then trace the spool in the center of both circles to use as a guide for gluing the spindles.
  2. Cut spindles to measure: about .25cm x 6.5cm (about 75-100 pieces.)
  3. Glue the pieces onto the circle.
  4. Cut out your stars (2) and score. The original idea for this project came from the tutorial by grey luster girl. I changed the size and shape of my star to fit this project. To make the star, I made a paper template by folding it up like a snowflake and then cutting it until I got the size and shape that I wanted.
  5. Glue your stars onto the spindles.
  6. To make the base of the star, fold a piece of cardboard in half to make an ice-cream cone shape. (Simpler and more effective than the pyramid one I made.) and glue your stars and spindles to both sides.

Cardboard Christmas Star Tree Topper: The Cardboard Collective

 

Cardboard & Button Christmas Tree

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Cardboard and Chopstick Christmas Tree by Amber

I made this little table top Christmas tree for the girls. They are really into stringing beads and buttons these days. They love the act of decorating (and redecorating) a tiny tree.

This is also the perfect little something to send to someone who doesn’t decorate much for the holidays …… you can stuff it in an envelope.

We collected some of our orphan buttons from the ground around train stations and parks we frequent here in Tokyo and some are from our old clothes.

Cardboard Christmas Tree by Amber

To make the tree:

You will need a chopstick, scissors, cardboard and a rubber band.

  1. Trace around the mouth of a drinking glass and add 1cm to the diameter to make the largest section of the tree. Cut it out.
  2. Continue tracing and cutting out the circles, making each one about 1cm smaller than the last. I ended up with 7 layers.
  3. Poke a hole with the chopstick through each circle and thread it onto the tree, starting with the largest. Be careful not to push the circles down too far.
  4. Draw and cut out a star by lining up the corrugations so that you can thread it onto the top of the chopstick.
  5. Cut a long strip of cardboard (about 2-3cm wide) and roll it up with a rubber band to make the base.
  6. Decorate with your favorite orphan buttons or disassemble and send to a friend.

Cardboard Turn-taking Cube

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The Cardboard CollectiveWho's Turn is It? The Cardboard Collective

This cardboard die was made in an attempt to settle disputes in our house. My youngest had just turned two, and well, no dice, it didn’t work at all. The two of them actually fought over who got to play with the cube, so I just put it on my shelf, and chalked it up to a failed experiment.

At two and a half though, things have changed for the better, and the “turn cube” is doing me some justice.

Just a cardboard cube, six photos and assorted washi tape is all that you need. If you have an odd number of children in your family, you’ll need to put a “roll again” message on one face of the cube, and if you have more than 6 kids, well, I’m sure you’ve figured out a better system than this for maintaining your sanity!

For instructions on how to make the cube, you can find them here, in the book I sell in my Etsy shop. The pattern also explains how to make large cardboard blocks that you can take apart and store flat, a really cool design.

Otherwise, try a plain cube-shaped cardboard box, often the ones that ornaments come in at this time of year are perfect!

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Cardboard Costume Challenge 2014

Although it’s already Mid November, I just wanted to say thanks again to all of you who took the Cardboard Costume Challenge this year.

Whether you sent in pictures or just got thinking about the idea for the future, thanks for following us on this year’s Halloween adventure. I had so much fun working on our insect family costumes as well as the other costume tutorials.

I hope to see you again next year, and please visit the Pinterest Board now and then as you start scheming and dreaming for 2014. (I already have a request for a Humback Whale costume from the littlest one and a year might be just enough time to figure it out!)

Blue Butterfly Wings

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recycled, paper, butterfly, wings recycled, paper, butterfly, wings

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paper, recycled, butterfly, wings

Amber
Little Blue Butterfly, 2013
Found cardboard and paper, melon and apple cartons, paper cord, watercolor, pastel chalk, white glue

part of the series:

“Insect Family”

(Inspired by this butterfly puppet by Octodrone that my daughter fell in love with.)

Cardboard Lightning Bug

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Cardboard Lightning Bug/Firefly costume by Pete via The Cardboard Collective OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Pete
Lightning Bug, 2013 (commonly mistaken for cockroach)
Found cardboard and paper, steel nuts & bolts, watercolor, white glue

part of the series:

“Insect Family”

Stay tuned for more winged cardboard creatures…..